Showing posts with label recipes. Show all posts
Showing posts with label recipes. Show all posts

December 5, 2010

Delicious Holiday Gift ~ Sweet Hot Spiced Pecans

I love cooking for my friends, family and neighbors at holiday time. Here is one of my favorite gift foods to make and share. I got this recipe from Sunset Magazine several years ago. I love this recipe because it’s not too sweet and there’s a subtle spicy bite to it.  Wrapped up in pretty packaging, it makes the perfect gift for neighbors, coworkers or friends. 

Sweet Hot Spiced Pecans

Sweet-Hot Spiced Pecans

1/3 cup granulated sugar
3/4 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
1 large egg white
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
2 cups pecan halves

Sweet Hot Spiced Pecans In a bowl, mix the first six ingredients. Whisk in egg white and oil. Stir in pecan halves.

Gifts from the KitchenLine a baking pan with foil and spray with cooking spray. Spread nuts in a single layer on baking sheet.   Bake in a 300 degree oven, stirring once until nuts are crisp and lightly browned, 20 to 25 minutes.  Let cool about 5 minutes, then use a spatula to loosen nuts from pan; cool completely.

pecans Share with those you love. Store airtight at room temperature up to two weeks (if they last that long). 

Do you have a special recipe you like to share with friends at the holidays?

Sharing at Skip to My Lou,  Today’s Creative Blog, and Beauty and Bedlam.

October 31, 2010

Sun Dried (Oven Dried) Tomatoes

San Marzano Tomatoes
Today was the last hurrah for my summer garden.  I harvested everything that I could and pulled all of the plants out.  It was a very disappointing year for tomatoes.  We had a very cool summer, and my tomatoes suffered for it.   The only tomatoes I had any luck with were my favorite plums, San Marzano.  Back in April I started these tomato plants from seed.
What to do with a big bowl of tomatoes?  Well, dry them of course.  Making your own “sun-dried” tomatoes is super easy. 

Oven Dried Tomatoes
Plum tomatoes work great for drying because they have very firm flesh with not a lot of extra liquid.  If you’re using another type of tomato, you may have to slice them thinner.  Wash the tomatoes, cut off the stem end and slice in half.  Arrange them on a parchment covered baking sheet (they will stick), and sprinkle then with a little coarse salt.
Sun Dried or Oven Dried Tomatoes
Pop them in a 200 degree oven.  They will take 4-6 hours to dry.  After about three hours, start checking them.  You want them to be dried with a chewy leathery-consistency, but not crispy. They should keep in a ziplock bag in a cool dark place for several months, but I put them in ziplock bags and freeze them.  
 
They’re chewy and delicious, just like a little bit of summer on your tongue.  Sun Dried Tomatoes I’ll be putting these on pizza, adding them to pasta and chopping them up and adding them to cream cheese for bagels this winter. 
 
Have you ever tried drying fruit?
 
I’ll be linking up this week to:  The Girl CreativeBeauty and Bedlam, An Oregon Cottage, and Life as Mom.

September 13, 2010

Bread and Butter Pickles

My grandma Erma was an amazing woman.  She was a master of all things kitchen related.  She grew her own fruits and vegetables and canned like a mad woman when things were in season.  She made all her own bread.   She loved making desserts.  Dinner wasn’t complete unless she’d made a cake, pie or Jell-O mold.  She was strong as a horse and she could easily arm wrestle me under the table. 
1950's Kerr Home Canning BookMy Grandma passed away a few years ago, but I’m lucky enough to have inherited her recipes.  This weekend, I decided to try making one of her specialties:  Bread and Butter Pickles.  The recipe is from this 1950’s Kerr Home Canning Book. 

Bread and Butter Pickles Recipe I love that the book is all splattered from years of use.  She’d written notes to herself in the margins.  I feel happy just seeing her handwriting.

Veggies for pickles I sliced the cucumbers, onions and peppers, salted them and let them stand for several hours. 

Simmering in the pot After rinsing and draining, I added the veggies to the boiling mixture of vinegar, sugar and spices. 

Hot water bath Then I processed them for 10 minutes in a boiling water bath. 

Finished!  Bread and Butter Pickles They turned out great!  I think my Grandma would be proud.  I felt like she was with me in the kitchen when I was making these.  Finally, Bread and Butter Pickles, just like Grandma used to make!

Do you have any treasured recipes that have been handed down to you? 

Love giveaways?  Link up your giveaway or enter other great giveaways at my new weekly feature:  Sunday Sweepstakes Linkup!

Linking to:
Skip to My Lou
A Beautiful Mess
Beauty and Bedlam
New Nostalgia
Sew Much Ado
Harrigan Howdy

August 6, 2010

What’s for Dinner? Quick Turkey Chili

This recipe is one of my go-to’s for those busy nights when the kids have sports or meetings.  I almost always have all the ingredients on hand.  It goes together quickly and my kids both love it.  I got this recipe from my friend Leslie, who is a Pampered Chef rep.

DSC_0089
Quick Turkey Chili
1 onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
2 Tb olive oil
1 pound ground turkey or ground beef
1/2 tsp salt
1.5 Tb Taco Seasoning Mix  (I use the low sodium version)
2 Tb Flour
One 28 oz can diced tomatoes, undrained
One 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
One 15 oz can chili beans in sauce, undrained
1/2 cup water

Heat oil in Dutch oven.  Add onion, bell pepper, jalapeno, garlic and ground turkey.  Sauté until meat is cooked.  Drain if necessary.  Add salt, flour and taco seasoning.  Stir for a minute or two to cook the flour.  Add tomatoes, beans and water.  Simmer for 4-6 minutes.  Serve immediately. 

Quick Turkey ChiliWhat’s your favorite, fast, kid friendly recipe?

Linking up with some of my favorite blog parties!

June 25, 2010

Hummingbird Love

I just love hummingbirds.  Here in Northern California we have several species of non-migratory hummingbirds.   The ones I see most often are Anna’s Hummingbirds.  While I have a lot of blooming flowers in my garden, I always like to have a full hummingbird feeder.   They’re a lot of fun to watch.  (But hard to photograph…I’m cheating with this great photo from the internet.)

annas_hummingbird_m[1]

Anna’s Hummingbird: photo © Tony Marple

I was in line at Wal-Mart yesterday.  I always checkout in the garden section since the lines are always so much shorter.  I was in line behind a woman who was buying hummingbird food.  Now, why would anyone buy hummingbird nectar when it’s so easy to make yourself???

Here’s an easy recipe to keep your local hummingbirds happy:

Hummingbird Nectar
In a saucepan, add one part white sugar to four parts water.  Bring to a boil and then cool before filling your feeder. 

DSC_0004Make sure your feeder is clean and mold free.  Hummers don’t like soap, so just use a brush and some bleach water to periodically clean out your feeder. 

Do you have any wildlife in your yard? 

Linking up to some of these fabulous parties!

Don’t forget to enter for a chance to win a  $60 CSN Stores Gift Certificate!

May 1, 2010

Cilantro Chicken

This is an easy but delicious grilled chicken recipe.   I love gardening so I always have a supply of fresh cilantro in the summer.  It’s easy to put together and absolutely delicious.  My kids and hubby devour this chicken.  I like to serve this with grilled veggies, a tossed green salad and a loaf of crusty French bread. 

Cilantro Chicken


Pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts to a uniform thickness. (Honestly, I only do this sometimes.  Most of the time,  I just throw some chicken breasts in the bag. If you take the time to pound them to a uniform thickness, they will cook more evenly.) 

Place breasts (pounded or not!) in large zip lock bag. 

To the zip lock bag, add: 
1/2 cup of chopped cilantro
5 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 Tbs honey
1 Tbs olive oil
1/2 t salt
1/4 t pepper
1/4 cup lime juice

Seal the bag and turn breasts to coat evenly. Chill for 1 hour or overnight.  The lime juice tenderizes the chicken so they come off the grill moist, tender and delicious.

Cilantro Chicken BBQ them when you're ready.

Grilled Cilantro Chicken 
It's delicious and a great way to keep your kitchen cool on a hot day!

Cilantro Chicken 
What is your favorite hot day recipe?

Linking up to:
Between Naps on the Porch
Reinvented
A Soft Place to Land

Our Homeschool Home

April 23, 2010

Who’s Ready to Grill? – Easy Rub Recipe

DSC_0055

I’m ready for Spring to really get here.  Here in Northern California, the weather has been taunting us.  One day it’s 70 degrees, and the next day it’s cold with driving rain.

Here is a recipe for an easy, delicious rub that I use on grilled chicken.  I got this recipe last year at Sunset Magazine’s Open House.

Rubadubdub (yields about 1/2 cup)
2 tsp ground black pepper
1 tsp ground white pepper
1.5 Tb coarse kosher salt
1.5 Tb brown sugar
2 tsp onion powder
Pinch of cayenne pepper
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp chili powder

Mix all ingredients together and store in air tight container.  Rub on meat before grilling.  Enjoy!

What’s your favorite food to grill or BBQ?

February 23, 2010

Easy Weeknight Dinner - Frittata

This is one of my go to recipes for weeknight dinners.  I usually have the ingredients on hand and it’s easy to put together.

 frittata

Spinach and Potato Frittata

2 T Olive Oil
6-8 small red potatoes, sliced 
2 cups torn fresh spinach
3 green onions, sliced
3 cloves garlic, chopped
~1/4 pound  Canadian bacon, diced (I’ve also used leftover bacon or sausage, both good!)
6 eggs, beaten
1/3 cup milk
1/2 cup shredded cheese
salt and pepper to taste,
crushed red pepper flakes to taste


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008 
Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat.  Add potatoes, cover and cook about 10 minutes until just tender.

 
add spinach and Canadian Bacon

Add spinach, green onions, garlic and Canadian bacon.  Season with salt and pepper.  Add pepper flakes for your desired level of heat.


Frittata 
Continue cooking while stirring for 2 minutes.


 012

Add milk to beaten eggs and pour over mixture.  Sprinkle with cheese.  Reduce heat to low, cover and cook for 5-7 minutes.


frittata

When eggs are mostly set, place under broiler until top is nicely browned. 

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Enjoy!


Pop in to the following great blogs to see what’s cooking this week:  Tasty Tuesday at Beauty and Bedlam, Tempt My Tummy Tuesday at Blessed with Grace,  and Thursday Ultimate Recipe Swap at Life as Mom.

January 12, 2010

Tuscan Chicken Stew

Here’s a great winter recipe.  Soups and stews are some of my cold weather favorites.  I got this recipe years ago from Cooking Light Magazine.   It’s delicious and both my kids love it, which makes it a winner for me.   This makes four servings, and according to Cooking Light has only 290 calories per serving.  Yummy, and sensible goodness.

Tuscan Chicken Stew

Tuscan Chicken Stew

1/2 t dried rosemary, crushed
1/2 t salt
1/4 t black pepper
1 pound skinned, boned chicken breast, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 t olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 (15.5 oz) can cannellini beans or other white beans, rinsed and drained
1 (7 oz) jar roasted red bell peppers, drained and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
3 to 4 cups torn spinach (I use baby spinach – no need to tear it.)

1.  Combine first four ingredients; toss well.  

chicken and seasonings

          

2.  Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add chicken mixture and garlic sauté 3-4 minutes.

Saute Chicken and Seasonings

3.  Add broth, beans and bell peppers, bringing to a boil.  Reduce heat;  simmer 10 minutes or until chicken is done.

Add broth, beans and peppers

4.  Add spinach.  It will seem like it won’t all fit, just cover with a lid and allow to cook down, stirring occasionally, until spinach is wilted, but not overcooked.

          Add lots of spinach        Put a lid on it

5.  Serve immediately.

Tuscan Chicken Stew
Pop in to the following great blogs to see what’s cooking this week:  Tasty Tuesday at Beauty and Bedlam, Tempt My Tummy Tuesday at Blessed with Grace,  and Thursday Ultimate Recipe Swap at Life as Mom.

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January 6, 2010

Eating from the Pantry – Lentil Soup

I cleaned out my pantry and what did I find?  Three bags of lentils.  Guess what’s for dinner?  This soup is delicious and easy to make.   Lentils are full of fiber and protein so it’s good for you too.

lentil soup

Lentil Soup

1 onion, chopped
2 carrots, diced
2 celery stalks, chopped
2 T olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 t dried oregano
1 t dried basil
1 bay leaf
1 can diced tomatoes (14.5 oz)
2 cups dried lentils
8 cups water
1 cup fresh spinach, roughly chopped
2 T vinegar
1 t ground black pepper
1 t salt (I don’t like too much salt, you may need more)

 lentil soup 002   

1.  Sort through the lentils.  I take mine and dump them on a rimmed cookie sheet.  Sometimes you’ll find small pebbles and other stuff in there that you don’t want to bite on later. 

sort the lentils

2.  Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.  Add onion, carrots and celery.  Cook and stir until the onion is tender.  Add garlic, oregano, basil and bay leaf.  Cook for another minute.

lentil soup 004

3.  Stir in lentils, water and tomatoes.  Bring to a boil.  Then, reduce heat and simmer uncovered for at least one hour.

4.  When ready to serve, stir in spinach and vinegar and cook until spinach just wilts.  Season to taste with salt and pepper. 

lentil soup
I like to serve this with some homemade cornbread.  Enjoy! 

Linking up to Life as Mom, Bloggeritaville, Beauty and Bedlam and Tempt My Tummy Tuesday

Is your inbox hungry?  Tasting Table is a free daily email about the best of food and drink culture. Click here for your free subscription now!

December 18, 2009

My Favorite Things – Homemade Gifts

I love cooking and sharing treats with my friends, family and neighbors at holiday time. Here is one of my favorite gift foods to make and share. I got this recipe from Sunset Magazine several years ago. I love this recipe because it’s not too sweet and there’s a subtle spicy bite to it.
Sweet-Hot Spiced Pecans

Sweet-Hot Spiced Pecans

1/3 cup granulated sugar
3/4 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
1 large egg white
2 teaspoons vegetable oil (Not shown in the photo below, sorry!)
2 cups pecan halves

spiced pecan ingredients
  1. In a bowl, mix the first six ingredients. Whisk in egg white and oil. Stir in pecan halves.decorations 112
  2. Line a baking pan with foil and spray with cooking spray. Spread nuts in a single layer on baking sheet. spiced pecans
  3. Bake in a 300 degree oven, stirring once until nuts are crisp and lightly browned, 20 to 25 minutes.
  4. Let cool about 5 minutes, then use a spatula to loosen nuts from pan; cool completely.
  5. Share with those you love. Store airtight at room temperature up to two weeks.
Sweet-Hot Spiced Pecans
For another great gift from the kitchen, check out my Easy Toffee Recipe.
Do you have something special you like to make for friends and family at holiday time?


Linking up to Tempt My Tummy Tuesday and The Shabby Chic Cottage.

December 9, 2009

Making Toffee – Easy Yummy Gifts

toffee gifts
One of my favorite gifts to make at the holidays is Toffee. It is easy to make, and people LOVE it! Here’s an easy recipe:

Toffee
1 cup butter
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped pecans

toffee ingredients
1. Place butter and sugar in a heavy bottomed saucepan over medium heat.
toffee- butter and sugar
2. Once the butter begins to melt, stir constantly, until the mixture is the color of a brown paper bag. You really do have to stand at the stove the whole time once it starts bubbling. This stuff is hot, so stir carefully.
toffee 012
3. As soon as it’s the color of a brown paper bag, pour it onto a baking sheet and spread it around evenly. Immediately sprinkle on chocolate chips. They’ll start to melt immediately.
toffee and chocolate
4. Using a knife or spatula, evenly spread melted chocolate chips.
finished toffee
5. Sprinkle chopped pecans over melted chocolate. Chill.
toffee with pecans
6. When it’s hardened, break into pieces. This recipe makes four gift bag sized servings.
toffee gift bag
I guarantee your friends will thank you!
Do you have a special recipe you like to share with friends and family at holiday time?